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1. An improvement to an existing product. Some companies, especially technology companies, offer upgrades to customers for free or at a discount.

2. An improvement to the quality of securities in a portfolio. For example, one may sell a stock with a given risk and return and buy another stock with a higher return at the same level of risk. Alternatively, a security may upgrade by itself; for example, its issuer may announce higher than expected earnings, and, therefore, a higher dividend.

3. An increase in a bond rating. For example, if a bond goes from a junk rating to an investment-grade rating, the bond is said to be upgraded. This usually occurs when the issuer reduces its exposure to one or more risks.
Farlex Financial Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All Rights Reserved


to replace an existing COMPUTER system (HARDWARE and/or SOFTWARE) by a more powerful model capable of processing data faster or storing larger amounts of data. When upgrading, computer users can experience problems of compatibility with existing programs and machines.
Collins Dictionary of Business, 3rd ed. © 2002, 2005 C Pass, B Lowes, A Pendleton, L Chadwick, D O’Reilly and M Afferson
References in periodicals archive ?
"Why would you spend billions of dollars to build an upgrader to create a product that is looking to be oversupplied in the markets you can access today?" says Jackie Forrest, director of global oil for consultancy IHS CERA.
* Income taxes--Facing challenging economics, Alberta upgraders may struggle to generate positive cash flow and consequently pay less income tax.
The upgraders convert tar-like crude from fields adjoining the northern edge of the Orinoco River into exportable oil.
PDVSA says its production costs are only $4 per barrel compared to an industry average of around $50, though this figure may not include the hefty financing costs associated with building multibillion dollar upgraders. Producing and upgrading Orinoco oil may now appear less complicated than other nontraditional oil projects such as Brazil's deep-water production that involves extracting crude from up to 4.5 miles (7 kilometres) below sea level.
The two surrendered half stakes in oil sands projects in return for an interest in US refineries, a move that allows those companies to avoid building expensive upgraders to process their oil sands bitumen.
Two of the biggest players in the oil sands, Suncor Energy and Petro-Canada, served notice this week they aim to weather tumbling oil prices and the world economic crisis by deferring major expenditures on processing plants called upgraders, which turn the heavy crude from the sands into refinery-ready light oil.